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Noise Mapping report by Sustainable Acoustics for Defra released - shaping round 4



Report NO0256 by Sustainable Acoustics was published by Defra on thier website on the 31st July 2020.


The report considers the views of 63 stakeholder organisations across a range of Local Authorities, NGO's, Universities and the Devolved Administrations. It then makes seven recommendations for the round 4 noise mapping contract to consider and beyond. These were :

1. Communication to stakeholders regarding the statutory requirements and methodology driving basic noise mapping (as set out in the Environmental Noise Directive and transposed into domestic law for England in the Environmental Noise (England) Regulations 2006, with various equivalents in place for the Devolved Administrations).;

2. Explore how this legally compliant mapping can be adapted to provide additional useful services fit for the digital age, including interactive, holistic, and dynamic maps capable of updating using existing datasets

3. Design the architecture of the system in such a way that it provides the possibility of adding expanded functionality in the future – for example, to deliver information on sound quality as well as level; and the ability to provide a two layer sound map (national strategic & local policy;) with the ability to recalculate dynamically to explore planned interventions and link to existing and uploaded datasets;


Recommendations to follow the Round 4 mapping project

4. Review evidence for a methodology for mapping soundscapes to ISO standards and sound quality mapping, encouraging research where necessary, but also to explore crowd sourced data. Include the idea of “Sound Future” Planning – add on an option to add in a Sound Quality layer.

5. Engage the public on using an IT platform that can connect to smart wearable technology.

6. Consider how to deal with future noise sources, like drones.

7. Complete a workshop post round 4 delivery to evaluate how well it delivers against points 2 and 3 above.


For more details see the full report on the Defra website here : NO0256.


Main author and Managing Director for Sustainable Acoustics Ltd. Peter Rogers said :"It was an honor to be approached by Government to complete this review, and facilitated us to take the final step to becoming net zero carbon as part of the journey. What we discovered we hope will shape and influence noise mapping to become a tool for a Sound Future, using sound as part of creating a sustainable future we can all enjoy not endure, along side nature."

Peter is a Fellow of the Institute of Acoustics with over 25 years experience and owner of Sustainable Acoustics Ltd. He can be reached at sa@sustainableacoustics.co.uk

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